When I first heard of [The Walking Dead](tag:201193), it was just about to start season 3. When I saw the first episode on Netflix, I went through it faster than I did some of my college finals. It was intriguing, bloody, and just damn fun. Besides those shining positives, the characters were what stood out the most. Each person has such a different personality and each person drives the plot forward in some way. There was always someone to love or hate. Like a good chunk of the fandom, I took a liking to Daryl Dixon, the bad boy with a crossbow. The fangirl inside of me quickly fell for his good looks and mysterious personality. When he was stranded with Beth Greene in season five, he confessed that he was a drifter and felt like no one cared about him. His depressing story and love for his brother, Merle, made him seem like a sensitive individual. And of course, that huge love for Daryl sparked merchandise, video games, and stardom for Norman Reedus.
Since he is the most popular character on the show, people speculate that that makes him immortal. Fans had even made shirts that say “If Daryl Dies, We Riot” to send the writers a message. However, the writers keep reiterating that no one is safe and could die at any time. Group members have come and gone throughout the six seasons leaving only Rick, Carl, Daryl, Carol, and Glenn from the original group. And since the writers, unsurprisingly, fooled us with the death of Glenn, it makes the writers seem like cowards. Can they really kill off one of the original characters for good, or will they just go for the cop-out and go for the one of the expendables? If they want to be like Game of Thrones so badly, they’re doing a bad job of it. If they really want to prove that anyone can die, then I will gladly volunteer my favorite character as tribute.
This past season has had the group in Alexandria, gaining more useless characters than losing them. In exchange for losing Noah (an equally worthless character), they have now gained Denise and Spencer, two more characters that are easy to get rid of. The show has just introduced The Saviors, a vicious group that is lead by an even more vicious person, Negan. In the comics, Negan is a ruthless sociopath who kills Glenn by smashing his face in with a baseball bat. And since the writers already pulled the “just kidding” card with Glenn’s death this past season, Daryl could take his place.
For starters, Daryl has barely been in this season. He’s had a few scenes set on him but nothing plot-centric. Besides the epic rocket launcher bit, he hasn’t even seen much action. He’s simply been there to remind fans that he’s still around. If Daryl were to die this year, it would show that the writers were able to stick to their promise that no one is safe. And since he isn’t in the comics, Daryl is a wild card that could go in any direction. One character who has been speculated to die has been Abraham Ford. In issue 98, he dies by crossbow to the head mid-conversation. Since it was so anti-climatic, creator Robert Kirkman has always regretted how he went down. But again, Abraham was only introduced two seasons ago while Daryl has been around since the beginning. While it would definitely be heartbreaking to see Abraham go so soon, it’s still not as much of a risk.
With the introduction of Paul “Jesus” Monroe, the group is already starting to look a little big again. Since Kirkman has been talking about a bleak finale this season, it definitely sounds like one of our favorite characters will be biting the dust (no pun intended). If Daryl is the unlucky one, it will truly show if the hardcore Daryl fans will leave like they always say they would. As a huge Daryl fan, I know I’ll be sticking around. It’s just a show, after all.